Madison looks to rebuild

Last year the Madison Warhawks completed their best football season in school history, capped off by winning the Division 3 State Championship. It’ll be tough to repeat, but senior running back and wide receiver Michael Garner is ready for the challenge. Garner finished his junior season with 827 all-purpose yards and 9 touchdowns.

Garner has offers from Arizona and Idaho, along with interest from Boise State, New Mexico and UCLA, but doesn’t plan on focusing on his recruitment during the season.

“I’m focused more on the season, but we are thinking about taking a visit to Idaho during the bye week,” Garner told me. “Keeping my options open throughout the season.”

Garner will have to step up with the Warhawks not having the services of Pierre Cormier (Arizona) and Lee Walker on the offensive side of the ball this season. The loss of Cormier, who ran for 2,233 yards and 29 touchdowns as a senior, is huge. He’s likely to see playing time as a true freshman for Arizona.

With Garner having an increased role during his senior year, he spent time during the offseason to prepare, “I’ve been doing agility drills on my own, and staying in the weight room because I need to get bigger.”

Junior quarterback Kareem Coles is back after a sophomore campaign in which he threw 23 touchdowns to only 7 interceptions. Coles and Garner will be helped by the return of a very strong offensive line led by Sam and Jake Vermillion.

Garner isn’t close to choosing a school, but he does know what he’s looking for, “Looking for my major, which is kinesiology. How good the football program is, and I don’t want to go too far from home.”

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